Jean-Daniel from France writes:
I stayed in Schladming, during 8 days, from the 20th to the 28th of January 2014.
It's a good ski resort and ski area for people who like still feeling in a city :
-extra wide, well groomed and pretty easy slopes, with ski canons on most of them.
-a lot of facilities in the resort and the ski area : entertainments for families, speakers with pop/cheesy music on few slopes, a lot of restaurants/apres-ski clubs everywhere. The ski area looks like an amusement park !
-very modern and efficient ski lifts (most of the chairlifts have a protective bubble, which is pretty rare in France!)
-all of the ski area is under 2000m, which guarantees to not have too much cold and wind. And most of the slopes are in the forest. Thus, it's a good ski area for skiing when it's snowy.
But, if after a long year of working in London, you wish to lose yourself there and to approach the nature still more, you will be very disappointed :
-the ski resort is in a very low valley and all of the ski area is under 2000 meters.
And Schladming looks a bit like a city, even more because there is not snow every time in the resort (it's too low). Even if the weather is colder than in France, it stays a low/middle mountain region and thus the landscape is a bit "banal" compared to Swiss and France (ok, there is the Dachsteingletsher, but it's not really interesting for skiing and it's more than 30 minutes away by bus).
There is a lot of people everywhere on the slopes even if you don't really queue to get the lifts (and my holidays was in the middle of January, not the most busy period !)
-the ski area is totally inappropriate for good skiers: no sporting challenge!
-there are too many people on the slopes to get speed in carving skiing.
-there are almost no mogul fields, and all of the black slopes are very easy (compare to France and Austria).
-the off-piste ski area is very narrow: there is a good 200 meters gap north face from the Gipfel in Hauser Kaibling, and the "secret slope", but not really more. And the famous "Edelgriesskar", in Dachstein, is not in good condition very often (south side of the valley).
-the daily ski pass costs 46€, which is about 20% more than in France, compared to this type of ski area (you pay for the very good ski lifts and the amusement park!).